Magna Scraps Lyft Partnership To Co-Develop Self-Driving Technology

Automotive supplier Magna has scrapped its partnership with ride-hailing giant Lyft to co-develop self-driving technology.

In a press release detailing the company’s financial outlook for 2020 and beyond, just three sentences were dedicated to discussing the Lyft partnership. Here it was revealed that while Magna will stop working with Lyft to co-develop self-driving technology, it will continue to work on assisted driving systems.

“We expect to continue to collaborate in several areas related to autonomous developments, including aspects of hardware development and potential joint opportunities in software and hardware manufacturing,” the press release reads.

Magna believes there is better growth potential in the near and medium-term through to 2025 in the driver-assisted market of Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3 autonomous systems than there is full self-driving technology.

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“It’s a refocus on the assisted driving part of autonomy,” Magna president Swamy Kotagiri told Reuters in a telephone interview.

Magna invested $200 million in Lyft to co-develop self-driving cars back in early 2018.

With the shift in focus, Magna says its 2020 operating margins will improve due to its lower spending on developing assisted and autonomous technology. Company chief executive Don Walker added that the automotive sector has become “more realistic” about how quickly fully-autonomous vehicles will hit the market. Magna’s existing driver-assistance systems business is running above $550 million.

At the same time the company initially announced its partnership with Lyft, it revealed it would up its research and development investments towards new technologies by $100 million, much of which was allocated towards solid-state lidar systems.

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